Loc: St. Louis, Missouri
I use a Steripen and coffee filters for getting water. I'm satisfied that the water is safe to drink but here in Missouri it often doesn't taste very good. Not a chemical taste (since I'm using UV and not chlorine) but rather a taste from the dissolved minerals in the water. We have a lot of limestone around here and I think that's the problem. Often the water has a slightly bluish tinge (like the water in Havasu Falls in Arizona for those who have been there).
It's probably not killing me but it's not fun to drink either. I don't think a filter would help this, would it? I don't know much about filter technology. It may be that activated charcoal would remove the bad taste. At the moment I'm just compensating by carrying lots and lots of water so I seldom have to use the water in the creeks I come across except for washing. Tastes better, weighs a lot. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" />
A filter will not remove dissolved minerals; they have to undergo some sort of precipitation reaction to be removed. You can run the water through an exchange column but then you are just swapping sodium for the calcium and magnesium. Not a good trade.
Just tell yourself that the dissolved calcium and magnesium are really good for your bones and that medicine that does you good is supposed to taste lousy. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />
I like the trails along the Taum Sauk mountain area; and east of Johnson shutins (thatís my avatar). There are nice backpacking trails near Rock Falls (good swimming hole by Emminence). St. Francois State park has some backpacking trails and a nice freshwater spring to camp by. However, that one has a noisy road a little too close imho. Iíve also backpacked along the Current river but I canít remember what section--- that was somewhere south of Salem.
And if you like to bike ride, St. Louis has excellent bike trails. I love biking over the Mississippi River on the dedicated foot/bike/route66 bridge and down to the st. louis arch. Is there any biking bridge more beautiful? I still have yet to do the 200 mile Katy trail.
Loc: Central Texas
The worst filter experience I have ever had was on the Rio Grande when it was receiving a lot of runoff. The water was the consistency of a milk shake. We tried to let it settle overnight in buckets to avoid seriously clogging the filters. Settling didn't solve the problem. The First Need filters clogged within one gallon even though the water was fairly clean and we had settled it further with flock. Backwashing didn't unclog the First Need filters. A Freshwater filter worked somewhat better since we could actively brush it out before backflushing. I think they are out of business, but I am convinced that any filter that can be actively cleaned will be superior under certain conditions to one that can be cleaned only by backflushing.